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News Eagle - Hawley, PA
  • Junior firefighter training announced

  • Young people interested in training as a firefighter or emergency medical responder have an opportunity April 26-27, with a weekend of intense, hands-on learning. Tim Knapp, the Pike County Training Director, announced the second annual "Junior Firefighter Weekend", at the County Commissioners' meeting March 19.
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  •    Young people interested in training as a firefighter or emergency medical responder have an opportunity April 26-27, with a weekend of intense, hands-on learning. Tim Knapp, the Pike County Training Director, announced the second annual "Junior Firefighter Weekend", at the County Commissioners' meeting March 19.
        Training will be done at the Pike County Training Center, on Pike County Boulevard off Route 739 in Blooming Grove Township. The Center opened in 2012 and also includes County 9-1-1 Communications and Emergency Management offices. There is no fee.
    Chiefs and line officers from various area fire departments will provide “hands-on” practical training in all aspects of fire and rescue operations as permitted by Pa. Law for junior members.
    Topics will include Water supply, Engine and Truck Company duties, skills and tasks and Vehicle Rescue with EMS activities.
    Full turnout gear will be required for each attendee and all companies will be required to provide proof (copy of) of valid “workers compensation” insurance to the Pike County Training Center prior to be allowed to participate in hands on operations.
        The public is welcome to participate and need not be affiliated with a fire department or other organization. An area will be provided for spectators.
    ••• Special safety program
        There will be a special program at 9 a.m., Saturday, April 26 at the Training Center entitled, "The Courage to Stay Safe... so Everyone Goes Home." A three and a half hour presentation is planned by the Office of the State Fire Commissioner on firefighter safety. Pennsylvania State Fire Academy staff and adjunct instructors will focus on the need for firefighters and officers to change fundamental attitudes and behaviors in order to prevent line of duty deaths.
       Survivors of firefighters who died in the line of duty will tell their moving story of how the death impacted them.
       There is no charge for attending, and the safety program is geared for adults as well as youth.
    "Firefighters must have the courage to face a multitude of risks in order to save lives and protect their communities," promotional material for the program states. "Their courage allows them to willingly risk their own lives so that others can be saved.

 A different type of courage is required to 'stay safe' in potentially dangerous situations, avoiding needless risks and tragic consequences."
       This program will kick off the Junior Firefighter Weekend.
        Commissioner Chairman Richard Caridi stressed the importance of building up volunteer recruitment. He said that each of the fire  and EMS companies are lacking personnel. He said it is a statewide problem, and only five years Pennsylvania went from having 300,000 volunteers to 70,000.
    Page 2 of 2 -    As of March 19th, there were 40 young people registered for the Junior Fire Weekend; Knapp said these were his core group who attended last year. The students are from Wallenpaupack. He said he was going to be talking at Delaware Valley School District about the program, and hopes to see as many as 80 kids register.
      Knapp invited anyone to e-mail him at knapp@pikepa.org for more information or to register.

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